Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Meat Alternatives

Meatless products, such as tofu dogs, soy burgers, nut loaves or texturized vegetable protein, add variety to your vegetarian diet. These products, found in many grocery stores and health food markets, simulate the taste and texture of meat and usually have less fat and fewer calories. Many of the meatless products, such as tofu or tempeh, are made from soybeans.

If you follow a vegan diet, you may need to find alternatives for eggs and dairy products. Try these suggestions when meal planning or cooking:

* Milk. Drink fortified soymilk, rice milk or almond milk in place of cow's milk.
* Butter. When sauteing, use olive oil, water, vegetable broth, wine or fat-free cooking spray instead of butter. In baked goods, use canola oil.
* Cheese. Use soy cheese or nutritional yeast flakes, which are available in health food stores.
* Eggs. In baked goods, try commercial egg replacers — a dry product made mostly of potato starch. Or you can use the following to replace one egg: 1/4 cup whipped tofu or 1 tablespoon milled flaxseed mixed with 3 tablespoons of water. For an egg-free omelet use tofu instead of eggs.
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